Mr. Seward to Mr. Pruyn.

Sir: The accompanying sword is one of the two which were purloined from the Japanese ambassadors during their stay at Baltimore, in June, 1860. It [Page 819] has recently been forwarded to the President by Major General Dix, who states that its recovery is due principally to the exertions of Mr. McPhail, deputy provost marshal of the police of Baltimore.

I commit it to your care in order that you may restore it to its rightful owner on your arrival at Yedo. The occasion of your doing so will be a proper one to impress upon the Japanese authorities a sense of the importance which we attach to the detection and punishment of crimes of every degree committed by our citizens. Though the guilty may escape for a while, the ends of justice here seldom fail of accomplishment. Especially is this the case when the victims are citizens or subjects of a friendly power.

I am, sir, your obedient servant,


Robert H. Pruyn, Esq., &c., &c., &c., Albany, N. Y.